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Causal Explanation in Psychiatry - Beyond Scientism and Scepticism

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889452293 Year: Pages: 102 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88945-229-3 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Medicine (General) --- Psychiatry
Added to DOAB on : 2017-10-13 14:57:01
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How best to 'go on'? Prospects for a 'Modern Synthesis in the sciences of mind

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889199068 Year: Pages: 91 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-906-8 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Psychology
Added to DOAB on : 2016-01-19 14:05:46
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Psychology straddles areas from the biological to the social and cultural. Within that vast range, there have been recent explosions of interest in neuropsychology, genetics and epigenetics, and the evolutionary bases of mindedness. Correspondingly, there have been conceptual innovations and new empirical evidence in relation to the embodied, social and discursive processes supporting mind and personhood. Simultaneously, awareness of developmental processes and their dynamic interweaving of genetic, physiological, neurological, social and cultural elements has also increased. Might such developments help ‘connect the dots’ between diverse aspects of mindedness and the contexts within which it arises? Whilst it seems clear that mind is co-constituted of both biological and socio-cultural processes, how might we bring these disparate realms of knowledge together? In a number of these areas, suggestive integrative possibilities have been explored (e.g., predictive processing, embodied and situated cognition, dynamic developmental systems theory) and insights such as a focus on action, ‘knowledge as skills’, embeddedness and connectivity have been pursued across a range of disciplines. This edited collection of articles bring together such possibilities – and others - in the same forum in order to provide an opportunity to re-visit a recurring discussion within theoretical psychology: The claimed lack of - and potential for - theoretical synthesis and unity. While the chapters range over a number of areas of research, this collection is focused on current prospects for conceptual synthesis within - or convergence of research between - aspects of mind and mindedness. As is clear from the contributions, it highlights integrative conceptual proposals that emphasize action-orientation, process, embeddedness and connectivity – especially between explanatory ‘levels’. Beyond specific proposals for integration, several of the contributions explicitly or implicitly expose broader questions about the purpose of psychological research, the epistemological and ontological commitments required, and the relevant social, political and economic contexts within which such research is performed. This is perhaps inevitable since any aim for synthesis of various understandings of mind will - or should - lead to consideration of the general implications, beyond the ‘science’, that follow from an integrated account of mind and mindedness. Whether or not the contributions in this volume provide insights into profitable paths towards greater theoretical synthesis in the sciences of mind or, alternatively, provide grist for the mill of renewed skepticism over the potential or even desirability of such synthesis is unpredictable. Whichever the outcome, we feel sure that they will help provoke future productive research in, and thinking about, the sciences of mind.

What levels of explanation in the behavioural sciences?

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889195978 Year: Pages: 91 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-597-8 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Psychology --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2016-03-10 08:14:32
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Complex systems are to be seen as typically having multiple levels of organization. For instance, in the behavioural and cognitive sciences, there has been a long lasting trend, promoted by the seminal work of David Marr, putting focus on three distinct levels of analysis: the computational level, accounting for the What and Why issues, the algorithmic and the implementational levels specifying the How problem. However, the tremendous developments in neuroscience knowledge about processes at different scales of organization together with the complexity of today cognitive theories suggest that there will hardly be only three levels of explanation. Instead, there will be many different degrees of commitments corresponding to the different granularities - from high-level (behavioural) models to low-level (neural and molecular) models of the cognitive research program. For instance, Bayesian approaches, that are usually advocated for formalizing Marr's computational level and rational behaviour, have even been adopted to model synaptic plasticity and axon guidance by molecular gradients. As a result, we can consider the behavioural scientist as dealing with models at a multiplicity of levels. The purpose of this Research Topic in Frontiers in Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology is to promote an approach to the role of the levels and explanation and models which is of interest for cognitive scientists, neuroscientists, psychologists, behavioural scientists, and philosophers of science.

Everything Flows

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ISBN: 9780198779636 9780198779636 Year: Pages: 416 DOI: 10.26530/OAPEN_1000196 Language: English
Publisher: Oxford University Press Grant: FP7 Ideas: European Research Council - 324186
Subject: Biology
Added to DOAB on : 2018-07-02 11:01:01
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This collection of essays explores the metaphysical thesis that the living world is not ontologically made up of substantial particles or things, as has often been assumed, but is rather constituted by processes. The biological domain is organized as an interdependent hierarchy of processes, which are stabilized and actively maintained at different timescales. Even entities that intuitively appear to be paradigms of things, such as organisms, are actually better understood as processes. Unlike previous attempts to articulate processual views of biology, which have tended to use Alfred North Whitehead’s panpsychist metaphysics as a foundation, this book takes a naturalistic approach to metaphysics. It submits that the main motivations for replacing an ontology of substances with one of processes are to be looked for in the empirical findings of science. Biology provides compelling reasons for thinking that the living realm is fundamentally dynamic and that the existence of things is always conditional on the existence of processes. The phenomenon of life cries out for theories that prioritize processes over things, and it suggests that the central explanandum of biology is not change but rather stability—or, more precisely, stability attained through constant change. This multicontributor volume brings together philosophers of science and metaphysicians interested in exploring the consequences of a processual philosophy of biology. The contributors draw on an extremely wide range of biological case studies and employ a process perspective to cast new light on a number of traditional philosophical problems such as identity, persistence, and individuality.

Comprendre et apprendre dans l’interaction. Les séquences d’explication en classe de français langue seconde

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Book Series: Linguistic Insights ISBN: 9783034314510 Year: Pages: 292 DOI: 10.3726/978-3-0351-0641-1 Language: French
Publisher: Peter Lang International Academic Publishing Group Grant: Schweizerischer Nationalfonds zur Förderung der Wissenschaftlichen Forschung - 170336
Subject: Linguistics
Added to DOAB on : 2016-11-03 11:01:06
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This book is about the organization of explanation sequences in classes of French as a second language. It provides a description of how these sequences are organized, an inventory of resources mobilized by students to ask and give explanations, as well as a reflection on learning opportunities for students.

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